Uber Technologies and Alphabe’s Waymo have come together to bring fully autonomous car rides to the streets of Phoenix, Arizona. This exciting development comes after the announcement of their partnership earlier this year in May.
Starting now, Uber users in the Phoenix area can request a ride in a Waymo driverless vehicle. The process is simple: when booking your Uber ride, you can select from various options like UberX, Uber Green, Uber Comfort, or Uber Comfort Electric. If a Waymo vehicle is available, you can opt for this futuristic experience.
Waymo One App Integration
Alternatively, passengers can directly hail a Waymo Driver using the Waymo One app, which is accessible to the public not only in Phoenix but also in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and soon, Austin, Texas. This extended availability highlights the growing demand for autonomous rides.
Waymo has a longstanding presence in Arizona, dating back to the launch of Waymo One in Chandler, Arizona, five years ago. Initially, safety operators were onboard, but over time, fully autonomous Waymo vehicles took over. Today, the Metro Phoenix region is Waymo’s largest service area, providing 10,000 rides per week and serving 1,000 riders weekly from Phoenix’s airport SkyTrain locations.
Challenges in the Autonomous Vehicle Industry
While the autonomous vehicle industry shows promise, recent incidents have raised safety concerns. Waymo’s direct competitor, Cruise, faced a significant setback in California when its robotaxi permit was suspended. This suspension was prompted by Cruise’s alleged withholding of video footage during an ongoing investigation, following an incident involving a pedestrian. The incident underscored the importance of safety in autonomous driving.
A Bright Future for Autonomous Rides
The collaboration between Uber and Waymo marks a significant milestone in the world of autonomous ride-sharing. With safety at the forefront, riders in Phoenix now have the opportunity to experience the future of transportation.
Uber and Waymo have launched fully autonomous car rides in Phoenix, Arizona, offering a seamless integration for Uber users. Passengers can choose a Waymo vehicle when booking their ride, and the Waymo One app is also available in multiple cities. Waymo’s substantial presence in Arizona and the recent setbacks faced by competitors highlight the importance of safety in the autonomous vehicle industry.
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